Curves, Cats, and Creams

Fashion Orgasm Alert From The Thicky Chicky Just in Time for Valentine’s Day!


I overheard something the other day that really made me stop and think. A woman on the subway was chatting excitedly with her girlfriend about her upcoming wedding; the dress, the church, the reception hall, etc. After awhile, the topic of conversation gradually shifted to fashion (as it always should), and the friend asked the bride-to-be what she was going to wear to dinner with her new fiance on Valentine’s Day. I was absolutely floored when the blushing bride replied, “Oh, I don’t worry about dressing up for him now that I have the ring.”

Now, don’t misunderstand me; I’m all for equality in a relationship and your significant other accepting you as you are. Having said that, I also firmly believe in keeping the flame of passion lit and one of the ways to stoke the fire is by taking care of your appearance. Even though I’m married now, I still make it a point to get dolled up for a night on the town or even for a cozy night at home, which my husband loves because it shows that I still want to make a good impression on him.

Whether you’re on the first or the thousandth date, this peplum top by The Thicky Chicky will make a great impression! Crafted with love, it’s perfect for curvy girls who are ready for romance. A combination of a red polyester/Spandex blend peeking out from underneath a sexy black lace overlay, all topped off with a heart-shaped window into your, um, soul.

Oh, and did I mention it’s only $20.80? So make sure to treat yourself to a relaxing facial or heavenly massage so you’ll be fully rested and refreshed for whatever curve balls Valentine’s Day throws your way.

Leave a comment »

Rock Your Curves With Cher Rue!

For blog Cher Rue

Ladies, you are so lucky to be able to share in my interview with Cher Rue, writer, producer, actress, and curvy advocate who has pushed the curvy industry ahead by leaps and bounds!

1. Question: Why did you choose to transition from being a plus size model to TV show host of The Cher Rue Show and what were some of the challenges you faced?

Answer: I was very young when I started modeling and I made lots of friends, one of which I later went into business with and created a cable TV show.  The show was lots of fun and gave me very valuable producing, directing, and acting experience.

After the show ended, we  opened a night club exclusively for curvy women and the men who love them.  We were very family oriented and made everyone feel welcome. The club became very popular and it got lots of TV exposure, which helped me to be comfortable in front of the camera.

Later on, I enrolled in school for acting, and went on to have my own talk show. Two years later, I decided to take classes for commercials and improv, which was so much fun! I realized then that acting is a passion of mine and something you have to work hard at if you want to be successful.

2. Question: Who was your biggest supporter? 

Answer: My mother is my biggest  supporter; she has had issues with my weight growing up but has always had my back and best interests at heart.  My brother is my best friend and has always been there for me no matter what, which is so amazing because when we were little (he is seven years older), he would throw me on the rug to tickle and fight with me. Ha ha.

I also have so many great friends who are supportive, such as my great friend, actor Johnny Venokur, my spiritual friend, Paula Obeid, and designer Dede Allure. I am so blessed to have all of them in my life.

3. Question: Who was your favorite interviewee for The Cher Rue Show?

Answer: Definitely Green Eyes, the customer in episode 18, “Tattoos”, which I filmed at the Ink Monkey Tattoo Parlor in Venice, CA. He was very open, interesting, and family-oriented, plus he loved sharing the meaning behind his many tattoos, like the 3 Stooges on his butt!

I did a segment in Las Vegas that asks strangers on the street and getting their spontaneous response to questions such as “Would you rather have a beautiful face or a beautiful body? You would be surprised with all the different answers people gave.

4. Question: What is Rock Your Curvy Style and why did you create it? 

AnswerRock Your Curvy Style is my company through which I produce various events and I created it because there was such a huge need for more events in the curvy community.

For several years, I was part of yearly bashes and conventions for the plus size community and, while I was working on one, I got the idea of hosting fashion shows at them and utilizing the girls who are trying to break into modeling. For me, the best reward is watching them shine on the runway and helping to make their dreams come true.

I also love finding new designers in the plus community and helping them get their start. I firmly believe that these shows should be accessible to everyone, so I pay for the whole thing myself and refuse to charge admission, plus I attach one of my favorite charities to each show. 
I also host a Miss Rock Your Curves contest every year. Contestants are asked to submit a 1-minute video, and Miss Rock Your Curves is chosen based on how she contributes to the curvy community, not on her beauty, I feel real beauty is on the inside.

5. Question: Why do you think most curvy models are non-Caucasian? 

Answer: Actually, in LA, there’s an equal amount of Caucasian plus models. Maybe there aren’t as many on the East Coast because Caucasian women there aren’t as confident with their curves as non-Caucasians. But not living there or experiencing the models, I really don’t know how they feel; I just know the models in LA ROCK their CURVES!

6. Question: I was very surprised to learn that curvy women are more accepted in LA than on the East coast. Why do you think that is in a city where so many people are worried about being thin enough? 

Answer: I think women out here are simply more confident and people realize that beauty comes in all sizes. For example, I was once at a red carpet event in Hollywood, surrounded by gorgeous, thin girls, and this really cute guy ignored them and walked right up to me and started hitting on me.

7. Question: What would you say to critics who claim that encouraging women to accept their bodies will add to the obesity epidemic? 

Answer: I would say to anyone that we are all on our own journey and no one should criticize anyone, especially on the way they look. As long as we are healthy, that is all that matters. We are beautiful no matter what size we are!

8. Question: Do you have any children? If so, are they curvy?

Answer: I have one daughter, Heather, who has athletic build and surfs every day; she is a thick size 5/7 and works out all the time. We’re so different that it’s sometimes hard to believe she came out of my womb. I’m very much into glitz and glam, and she’s a straight-up bohemian surfer girl who is happiest when painting or drawing!


9. Question: What are your hopes for yourself, your daughter, and the plus size fashion industry over the next 5 years?

Answer: Since she just got married, I hope my daughter has a wonderful family soon that we can share and that she becomes a famous artist. 

For the curvy industry, I want to see more fashions like Dede Allure’s and I want women to feel fashionable, sexy, trendy, and happy in whatever they wear.

For myself, I just want to be good at my acting career and do a good job. I’m working on a brand-new reality show right now, so no telling where that will lead! I also have my own Parfum, “Rock Your Curves”, which is amazing and something I have always wanted. I also want to keep helping Dede Allure create fabulous new clothing designs for us plus size girls.,

Leave a comment »

Learn Why Curvy is Sexy with Whimsical and Sensual Cabiria!

For blog Cabiria dress

Eden Miller, stylist and designer of curvy clothing brand Cabiria, recently shared with me what it’s like to design “whimsical and sensual” fashions for the curvy girl.

1. Question: What do you feel is Cabiria’s biggest point of difference?

Answer: Cabiria is different because I use fabrics and craftsmanship that would be perfectly at home with other high-end designers in Barney’s, Fred Segal, Bergdorf Goodman, or Henri Bendel. I am not satisfied with the direction that many brands have gone, using lower quality fabrics and fewer fit details in order to meet the trend-obsessed, low-cost popular marketplace standards now.

2. Question: What is your favorite piece in the current collection? Why?

Answer: I really have no favorites, as I designed them all and culled the other designs to come up with these choice pieces. I think they are figure flattering on many different bodies, and are all made from beautiful fabrics. I wear them every day and I’m happy with them every day.

3. Question: What did you like best and least about being in Berlin’s Fashion Week and the “Curvy is Sexy” trade show?

I liked seeing how the major European plus size vendors work at a professional trade show, and how things are shown at vanity shows for fans*, not buyers, as they are here in the States.

I was incredibly unhappy to find that the “Curvy Is Sexy” show was entirely across town from the main fashion shows and how deeply understaffed it was in comparison; frankly, the plus size show was not going to draw any new vendors from the main shows.  There is no reason plus size cannot have a hall in the main selling spaces, as accessories, shoes, and outerwear did.  We are separate and definitely not equal.

4. Question: Was the attitude toward plus size fashion different in Germany than in the US? If so, how?

There are different market attitudes everywhere and the collections shown in Germany from all over Europe had a very accessible shape and variety in fabrication, but wasn’t very colorful.  I find that the diversity of customer in the US causes a wider degree of choice, though the quality was much higher in Europe overall.

5. Question: Why do you think so many designers do not want to create plus size clothes?

Answer: I can’t speak for them, and I don’t know why they wouldn’t expand their business models and the potential for profits by extending their product lines to include curvy women.

6. Question: What would you say to critics who claim that encouraging women to accept their bodies will add to the obesity epidemic?

Answer: There will always be critics and those who create. I think that it’s much easier to be self-loathing and accept current social opinions than take a stand and live without fear of other people’s opinions and criticisms.

7. Question: Do you plan to eventually create men’s clothes? Why or why not?

Answer: I don’t have any interest in creating men’s clothes because it’s a completely different marketplace with different rules. I also don’t have any plans to create shovels or lawn equipment; I think it’s that different.

8. Question: Are you planning to open more stores in the near future? If so, where?

Answer: Cabiria was recently picked up by Ms SVG in the UK, which is our first store outside the US, so that will hopefully lead to a larger global reach. I’m always interested in being carried in more brick and mortar stores where the buyers have discernment and taste; I can’t compete for the same clientele that will buy a $20 dress, because it’s again like selling lawn equipment. Totally different market.

9. Question: What are your hopes for Cabiria and yourself over the next 5 years?

I would love to grow Cabiria into a household name and I would love to create diffusion lines which incorporate my design elements, that would be licensed to people who truly know their customers and how to sell in those specialized marketplaces.

I really hope the marketplace evolves enough to stop differentiating between straight size and plus size fashion, and the delineation becomes about high quality and low quality instead, because that’s what should matter most, not size!

*Words in italics are used by the author, not interviewee, for emphasis.

1 Comment »

Anyone Can Cut Hair. Dominique Earle-Coppola Creates an Entire Image Just For You.

For blog Dominique picture

This gorgeous gal is Dominique Earle-Coppola, an image designer at Newton’s Fulgenzio Coppola Image Design Salon in Newton, MA. I was so intrigued when we met that I had to share her story with you. Read on to find out why.


1. Question: Why is Fulgenzio Coppola’s called an Image Design Salon? What is an “image designer”?

Answer: I use the term “image designer” instead of hair dresser because what I do is so much more comprehensive than cut and color hair. During a consultation, I ask my client in-depth questions about their style and makeup preferences, as well as their daily beauty habits, which allows me to suggest styles that really compliment their personality. For example, if they share that they like to wear dark, dramatic makeup, I would suggest blond hair because the light would compliment the dark instead of fighting with it for attention.

When I ask them about their daily beauty routine, I also get a feel for how much time they’re willing to invest in their hair, which will guide my style choices. If they simply blow dry their hair and pull it up in a ponytail, I wouldn’t suggest bangs because bangs need to be properly styled every day to look their best.

2. Question: What do you love most and least about being an image designer?

Answer: The most rewarding feeling in the world is knowing you made a client feel so good about herself, especially young girl, that she leaves the salon feeling like a million bucks.

What I like least is the stereotype that unfortunately still exists of beauty industry professionals; we are looked down upon as shallow, vain, uneducated people who are obsessed with our physical appearance and have no interest in anything intellectual. I am still haunted by the memory of my high school guidance counselor; in a meeting one day about my future career choices, she laughed when I said I wanted to become a stylist because she didn’t think that was a “real” job, much less a career path with growth potential. She then proceeded to sing “Beauty School Dropout” from the movie Grease, which led to me leaving her office humiliated and in tears.

People like her simply do not understand the power of one’s appearance, not only to others but to yourself! No one, woman or man, can tell me that they don’t hold their head just a little bit higher and walk just a little more proudly when wearing a great new outfit or rocking a fabulous new hairstyle. If appearance truly didn’t matter, why would we put so much effort into dressing for a date or a job interview? It matters!

3. Question: Can you describe the biggest fashion disaster you’ve ever seen and how you fixed it?

Answer: Boxed hair color is my greatest enemy, especially when touching up regrowth. One client was a dark brown with gray regrowth and she tried to go sandy blonde with boxed color, which also happened to be expired! She rushed to the salon in a panic when it turned her roots a metallic, brassy orange. If that wasn’t bad enough, she also tried to give herself bangs simply by combing her hair in front of her face and chopping it off, which left her with choppy layers all down the back of her head. I had to strip her hair by bleaching it out and then cut it to the shortest layer to repair the destruction left by her bang adventure.

Everyone, PLEASE don’t cut your bangs at home or use boxed color, especially if it’s expired! There is a reason why it costs more than $7.99 at a salon; you get what you pay for.

4. Question: Since you’re not plus size, how would you assure plus size clients that you truly understand their unique concerns?

Answer: If a plus size woman asks for a certain makeup look or hair style to look slimmer, it’s just like a 60-year-old wanting to look younger; certain styles work better for different features, whether those features are caused by weight, age, or anything else.

5. Question: What are some style tips you would share with us curvy girls?

Answer: No bangs! Bangs accentuate a fuller face. If anything, do a side bang.

Too-long hair hanging without shape also makes your face look fuller. Creating shorter layers while keeping the length creates more bounce, volume at the roots stops hair from hugging the face, and adding highlights creates dimension. Rule of thumb: the bigger the hair, the slimmer your face looks.

During a consultation with a curvy woman, I show them a book of women with face shapes similar to theirs wearing different styles, so they get an idea of how a certain style will work on them.

6. Question: What would you say to critics who claim that encouraging women to accept their bodies will add to the obesity epidemic?

Answer: First, mind your own business because it’s not your life. Second, you can’t force someone to change themselves. They need to love themselves first; by telling them to lose weight you’re depressing them. For the record, I don’t think curvy is the same as obese.

7. Question: What are your hopes for yourself, Fulgenzio Coppola’s, and the fashion and beauty industry over the next 5 years?

Answer: Within the next 5-10 years, I definitely want to open up more locations in the Boston area, especially on Newbury Street, since everyone has such unique styles in that neighborhood.

On my own, I want to do more fashion shows in different cities around the world. I don’t want to just be known as “the hairdresser from Newton”.

I hope the industry will someday soon accept everyone. I’d especially like to see more curvy people and more people who are not celebrities gracing the covers of top magazines.

I firmly believe that in order to be successful in any industry, one must adapt to change, especially in the ever-evolving fashion and beauty industry, so no matter what I do or where I go, I will always make it a top priority to stay up to date on relevant trends, technologies, and people

Leave a comment »

Not Sure How to Style Your Curves? Wardrobe Stylist Ty-Juana Flores Has Got You Covered – Literally!

For blog Ty-Juana Flores

My curvy sisters, I am so excited to share with you my interview with Ty-Juana Flores, fellow curvinista, wardrobe stylist, and founder of Style Your Curves, Boston’s own styling destination exclusively for us.

1. Question: Why did you choose to become a curvy stylist and what do you love most about it? 

Answer: I have always had fashion in my life; it was the norm for me to be surrounded by clothing and people who love it. I noticed that women with curves, even perfect strangers, would come to me for advice and guidance while shopping. I have a great group of friends and family who are curvy like me and we have all shared war stories about the elusive “perfect fit” and how designers are not catering to size 12 and up the way they should be. My passion for helping others in that area blossomed through my experience and I love focusing on making people happy!

2. Question: What were some of the challenges you faced when creating Style Your Curves and how did you overcome them? 

Answer: My biggest challenge would probably be proving that I am actually considered plus size and trying to explain to certain potential clients that I know about the plus size market. I am 6 feet tall, I wear size 14, and I have no problem putting on a Spanx, so don’t be fooled! My height stretches me out. I have always wondered why I was questioned about that because at the end of the day what really matters is if I as an individual have the skills to help a client look their best, right?

3. Question: Who was your biggest supporter when you were launching Style Your Curves?

Answer: My biggest supporters would definitely have to be my parents; no explanation needed on that! I mean, come on, they’re my parents! They understand my drive for success and do everything they can to help me succeed.

4. Question: Who was your favorite person to style and why?

Answer: I don’t really have a favorite person to style; I have enjoyed all of my experiences so far. They have all been different; ask me again in about a year and maybe I will have a different answer.

5. Question: Can you describe the biggest fashion disaster you’ve ever seen and how you fixed it?

Answer: One client was interested in my services and, as I always do before meeting with each new client, I asked for full body images and for her to fill out a fact sheet. The photos and fact sheet did not prepare me for what I was going to see in person! This particular client was looking for a closet intervention. Now, when I arrived at the home, her bedroom was a perfect example of a hoarder; I am no expert in that area but I have seen enough episodes of the show Hoarding, Buried Alive!.

I work by the hour and this client took 6 hours of my time, which was rare for me but, at the end of the day, she was able to put together outfits and accessories that she already owned without having to set foot inside a store. Let’s just say I got a great tip after that appointment and she has asked me to come back each season!

6. Question: Why do you think so many designers do not want to create plus size clothes?

Answer:  After working in the fashion industry in New York for a few years, I always asked that same question of my coworkers and colleagues and always got the same answer, “Too much fabric, too much money, it’s an additional cost to the designer, etc etc”. I feel that some designers who do an entire size run, sizes 0-12, need to take a deeper look at their collections and cut back on styles so that a plus size category can be added to the line. I have seen designs come out of showrooms that are then put into production only to be put on sale in a department store or boutique. That happens because the original design did not reflect the customer. So why not invest in a customer who will shop the pieces that are selling out in the smaller sizes? Get my point? Of course, modifications will need to be made to the design to cater to the curvy woman, but its worth it!

7. Question: Why do you feel that the majority of plus size models are non-Caucasian?

Answer: I never really noticed that the majority of plus size models were non-Caucasian, but with any culture,  genetics, family dynamics. health concerns, etc, play a key factor. I guess I’m just color blind.

8. Question: What would you say to critics who claim that encouraging women to accept their bodies will add to the obesity epidemic?

Answer: I would tell them that they should try to think outside the box. Loving your body says nothing about being obese or turning it into an epidemic. “Self love” means accepting who you are the way you are. Now, if one chooses to change the way they look to feel healthier and more vibrant, that should be a personal decision, not a decision based off society’s demands. My focus when dealing with curvy clients is to also teach the importance of self-love. If you have that then the critics’ comments are just that…plain ole comments!

9. Question: What are your hopes for yourself and the plus size fashion industry over the next 5 years?

Answer: My hope is to bring awareness to a size market that is just as valuable and in as high of a demand as any other size group. I have mapped out a 5-year plan for my business and hope that I can keep my vision alive.


“BBW Performer of the Year” Finally A Category in Adult Video News Awards


Whether you enjoy porn openly and unashamedly, consider it sinful and/or dirty, or fall somewhere in between, porn is a thriving enterprise and always will be as long as humans have hormones! I personally embrace it and believe that it’s a great way to learn new sex positions and techniques, plus it allows you to scratch a certain itch if your husband is working overtime.

This year was an even bigger year than usual for the porn industry and for curvy girls everywhere; the Adult Video News Awards, AKA the “Oscars of Porn”, introduced a new category called “BBW Performer of the Year”, and the curvaceous April Flores won by a landslide.

“BBW” has long been an abbreviation for “Big, Beautiful Women”, not only in the porn world but on dating and other social networking sites, telling the viewer or reader that the gorgeous woman they’re about to lay eyes on loves her curves and her sexuality and will not apologize for either!

Some have applauded this new category as a way to finally recognize that curves are sexy (GASP!) and some are insulted by the separation from “normal” porn stars. Laura Anne Stuart*, who writes the column SEXPress for the Shepherd Express, an alternative weekly newspaper in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and owns The Tool Shed, an erotic boutique, also in Milwaukee, sums up the controversy; “I have mixed feelings about this new award category. On one hand, I’m glad that the most well-known adult industry awards are recognizing that larger women are sexy and sexual. On the other hand, this probably means that the Best Actress and Female Performer of the Year categories will continue to be won by skinny people with preternaturally large boobs and/or butts rather than people of diverse body types—but that probably would have happened anyway.”

At first I too was insulted by this new category because it branded those with curves as having a different degree of sexy; then I reminded myself that we are different and we’ve damn well earned our right to be recognized as a new breed of sexy!

So, my curvy chicas, whether you’re a porn star or just play one on the weekends, be truly BBBW; “Big, Beautiful, and Bitchin’ Women”!


*Since many people are still under the unfortunate misconception that anyone associated with the porn industry must lack self-esteem and be shallow, vain, and uneducated, I wanted to add that Ms Stuart has a master’s degree in public health and has been a sexuality educator for more than 15 years.



Leave a comment »

Fashion Orgasm Alert! Monif C Creates A Little Black Dress Transformer.


Don’t you just hate admitting that Mom is right? Unfortunately, I recently had to swallow my pride and admit that mine was right all those years ago when she told me that no, repeat no, woman should ever consider her wardrobe complete without a little black dress. 

At least I am able to say that my confession was coerced. After discovering the “Marilyn Ruched Convertible Dress” by Monif C, I was forced into that admission because there’s literally no reason to not have this little black dress.

This curvy transformer can morph into twenty-two distinctly different dresses, including a halter dress, a dress with sleeves, a skirt, and even a baby doll top, just to name a few. With nearly endless combinations, you friends and fellow cocktail party goers will assume you’ve somehow blackmailed every curvy designer into giving you their dresses.

Oh, and did I mention that it’s made of jersey? This delectably soft material usually reserved for PJs will caress your curves and follow them all night as you make your presence known to everyone at your next event.

Monif C was launched in 2005 and is the brain child of a fabulously curvy mother and daughter team, Elaine and Monif Clarke, who firmly believe that every woman, curvy or not, has the God-given right to “unadulterated sexy appeal”. After winning several coveted industry awards, such as Full Figure Fashion Week’s “Best Plus Size Fashion Designer”, Monif C has indeed achieved the goal of designing “luxurious feminine clothes that make a statement”. 

Actually, with the Marilyn convertible dress, you can make two statements, or three, or ten…


Leave a comment »

Golden Globes? Try Golden Curves!


There is truly nothing like the red carpet at the Golden Globes; the screaming fans, the pushy paparazzi, and, of course, the heart-stopping fashion! And this year was no exception. A-listers like Cate Blanchett, Reese Witherspoon, and Julianna Margulies strutted their stuff in styles that could only be described as pure gold. 

Since we obviously only watched the Globes to drool over the celebrities’ outfits, Gwynnie Bee, AKA Netflix for curvy fashion, decided to make our fashion fantasies come true by creating outfits just for us that mirror the ridiculously expensive ones we fell in love with last Sunday night. Not only do they make you feel like rolling out your own red carpet, they’re designed to be more practical for us mere mortals to use in our everyday lives.

If you haven’t heard of Gwynnie Bee before, shame on you! Check out my post from January 5th to learn all about this must-have subscription service for curvy girls. And while you’re there, make sure to order your Golden Globe dress. After all, it’s never too soon to start prepping for next year’s show!

Leave a comment »

Meet the Curvy Coco Chanel, Miss Dede Allure!


I was so privileged to speak with the very first Miss Massachusetts Plus America, Denise Gaeta, AKA Dede, who also happens to be the designer and owner of one kick-ass curvy fashion, jewelry, and fragrance brand, Dede Allure. Below are her thoughts on Dede Allure and the curvy industry.

1. Question: What do you feel is Dede Allure’s biggest point of difference? Why?

Answer: We create classic, elegant, pieces for the curvy girl with classic colors that can be worn with anything else on the market. These pieces are timeless and, because they will never go out of style, you’ll have them forever. No other designer does this for curvy girls and there is such a huge need for it!

2. Question: What kind of challenges did you face when you were developing Dede Allure?

Answer: Manufacturing! I literally spent a whole year traveling the globe to find the right manufacturers because I’m very picky; my pieces must have both that high couture look and top-notch quality while still maintaining an affordable price point. When you’re making a classic piece that will last for 20 years, there can be no compromise on quality!

3. Question: Who were your biggest supporters when you were developing Dede Allure?

Answer: I’d have to say my close friends, especially some modeling friends out in California, my photographer, Troy Tackett, my brand strategist, Paul Schmidt of Evoke Branding, and my friend, Cher Rue, the writer and producer of Rock Your Curvy Style fashion production company. All of them took a huge leap of faith by taking me on as a client, and I will be forever grateful for them.

4. Question: Why did you choose to feature black diamond jewelry?

Answer: I was inspired by Sex and the City when Mr Big gave Carrie a black diamond. The black diamond is alluring, mystifying, and very unusual. If you look at a black diamond, it’s very deep and dark and can mesmerize you for hours. They are also classic stones that are timeless, just like my clothes, while being more affordable than traditional diamonds.

5. Question: Why did you choose to expand to Tunisia?

Answer: During my quest for manufacturers, I made some friends there and realized that there were hardly any options for plus size clothes. There were some online options, but the government, in order to keep Tunisia’s money within the country, prohibits people from ordering goods online from other countries. The only thing women can do is bring clothes back with them when they travel to other countries. I also had to open a Lufthansa drop freight (similar to DHL in the States) in order to get manufacturing done there.

Another reason I picked Tunisia is that I got such a warm welcome there, especially when I was doing work for Aleppo Shriners Children’s Transportation Fund, the charity I chose to support when I became Miss Massachusetts Plus America. The fund is a collaboration of 22 pediatric hospitals in the US, Canada, and Mexico that provides free care for patients suffering from conditions such as burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate .

While I was in Tunisia, I stayed with the Nouria family. The mother, Samira, and her daughter, Neyla, were especially wonderful and taught me the ropes of the local fashion industry, helping me find a manufacturing company and even introducing me to Azza, one of Tunisia’s most famous designers.  They were all so wonderful and I am very thankful for their help and their friendship.

6. Question: What is the biggest difference in people’s attitudes toward plus sizes in the different cities you’ve visited?

Answer: Globally, curvy girls are definitely not as accepted as they are here in the US, which is saying a lot because we’re still not 100% accepted here either.

In the US, the west coast has embraced plus size women much more than the East coast, which is why I really want to see the rest of the New England states involved in programs like Miss Plus America.

7. Question: What did you like best and least about being part of Miss Plus America?

Answer: I love absolutely everything about it! It’s such a privilege to be a part of and I can’t wait to see it grow.

8. Question: What would you say to critics who claim that programs like that would encourage women to accept their bodies as they are and will add to the obesity epidemic?

Answer: I’d say they need to educate themselves. We are not supporting obesity. Programs like Miss Plus America are about support; supporting each other and learning to love yourself for who you are.

9. Question: Why do you think so many designers do not want to create plus size clothes?

Answer: They’re afraid of the plus size stigma, which is such a shame because they’re missing so many incredible opportunities. For example, Troy took a big risk when he approached me for a photo shoot; his Beverly Hills friends thought he was insane and that he was ruining his career. Because he didn’t listen to them, his marketability has increased tenfold. He’s gotten an unbelievable amount of leads through my photo shoot. resulting in 8 pictures in Vogue and a 22-page spread in Imerge magazine, just to name a couple.

10. Question: Do you plan to eventually create clothes for men, kids, and standard size women? Why or why not?

Answer: I’m actually working on a men’s line right now, which will hopefully be ready to launch at Boston’s Fashion Week this fall. If it’s not, it will debut in the Spring of 2015 at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in New York City.

After that, my teen collection will be ready and I’m excited about helping young curvy girls feel confident in their bodies.

As far as standard sizes go, I’m really not interested in competing in that over-saturated market. If a customer wants one of my pieces in a standard size, I’ll gladly make it for her, but I want to focus on the curves!

11. Question: How do you feel that your background in cosmetology has shaped Dede Allure?

Answer: It’s definitely come in handy at shows when something goes wrong, like when your hairdresser’s water breaks and I have to finish the models’ hair myself while she leaves to give birth!

12. Question: What are your hopes for Dede Allure and yourself over the next 5 years?

Answer: I definitely want to open at least one store in Tunisia, and I really want to focus on getting into other untapped markets where the plus size community is so in need, both here in the US and around the world.

I also want to keep doing more fashion shows, especially in New England where there’s such a need for them, and especially with Rocky Your Curves.

Leave a comment »

You’re Never Too Young To Rock Your Curves With Chic and Curvy Boutique


Ah, adolescence. Mood swings, hormones, peer pressure, growth spurts, and, in many cases, curves! For some odd reason, my male classmates loved to talk to me/my chest. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that I wore a D cup bra by the time I was 12. Just a guess.

Growing up in a conservative Catholic family, I was extremely uncomfortable with anything remotely related to the word “sexy”, so I tried to hide my curves in overalls, turtlenecks, and my older brother’s flannel shirts (thanks, Franco!).

Thankfully, today’s curvy teens don’t have to hide their beautiful bodies; they can rock them in trendy, chic, and affordable juniors clothes from Chic and Curvy Boutique, a plus size boutique in Inglewood, CA, whose motto is “Accessorize, Accentuate, and Always Rock Your Curves”.

Now curvy teens can own the dance floor at Homecoming in dresses like this fuchsia and teal leopard print dress or hit the books in style with their palazzo pants in a retro yet modern black and multi-colored paisley print (see links to both below).

No matter what you look choose, my curvy teens, please embrace who you are, love your curves, and stay out of your older brother’s closet!

Leave a comment »

I'd like to buy a vowel.


Living Life Through Music


A stylist, foodie, & writer's blog.